The song was produced by the singer-songwriter Nick Lowe, who is best known for his late 1970s hit tunes "Cruel to Be Kind
"and "(I Love the Sound of) Breaking Glass
." He told Uncut
magazine that Costello was going to dump the song when they first started recording it. Lowe recalled: "We went through it all afternoon, and it just wasn't happening at all. Elvis didn't like it and he was getting more and more shirty. I couldn't see why. I thought it was a really good track, but it did sound very obviously poppy. Maybe that was a problem for him."
"Anyway, something about it was getting up his nose, and I'd started making overtures about this," Lowe continued: "'Well, all is not lost, Elvis. I can take this off your hands any time.' That he wasn't really biting. Out of the blue, Steve Nieve said,'What about if I do a sort of Abba piano part on it?' Complete silence. We knew their records were good, but no one wanted to own up to it. That needs really invite them, as did Elvis, solid consensus was, 'Let's try it.' I didn't think this was going to disturb my plan to get the track for myself. Nieve did the piano part and suddenly the thing went from black-and-white to fireworks."
"I don't think it's quite the first take that you hear on the finished record but the effect was instantaneous," Lowe concluded. "It gave the record an unbelievable sound and spirit. I thought it was pretty good before, but when you piano went on it I saw my nefarious scheme going out of the window. I didn't mind too much, because it was such a great cut. And so Elvis had them massive hit – and I didn't!"